Google has won a $1.6 million settlement against five defendants that it sued in December 2009 over the use of Google’s name in what the company called “a widespread Internet advertising scam.”
Today’s decision involves five of the 50 defendants that Google originally sued: Bloosky, Just Think Media, Crush, Hyper Interactive, Search 4 Profit, and Viable. Google had previously settled with another defendant, Pacific WebWorks, last June.
The companies created a variety of online marketing schemes that used Google’s name, such as “Google Cash,” “Google Profits” and “Google Money Kit.” In its suit, Google said that not only do customers of those companies not get the chance to make money, but they also face monthly fees that range as high as $80/month.
Among other things, the settlement permanently forbids the companies from “using in any manner the term GOOGLE, any of Plaintiff’s Google Marks, or any terms phonetically or confusingly similar thereto in connection with the marketing, selling, offering for sale, displaying, promoting or advertising of work-at-home business opportunities, work-at-home products, and/or work-at-home services.”
As part of the settlement, none of the five companies are admitting that Google’s claims are true. And Google is dismissing its claims against the remainder of the original 50 defendants.